Sunday, August 30, 2009

Fleeting, but Forever

We beheld the spectacle again this weekend of yet another Kennedy funeral. Uncle Teddy this time.

This country is fascinated by the Kennedy clan. They bring the epic story of an American family. Such wealth, such charisma, so much tragedy, all out in public. They're as close to a royal family as we'll ever see here. And with the passing of Teddy, I believe it is all gone now. The Kennedy mystique has been laid to rest.

We all watched this weekend as the family gathered -- children and grandchildren of the famous, classic faces we've all come to know. And in the faces of the grandchildren, we look for the next one, the next Kennedy to carry on, the one who has the style and mystique. Sadly, we don't see it. If it's there, it isn't obvious. It's so interesting how the aura of Kennedy does not necessarily transfer with the mere bestowing of the name and the genes.

I couldn't help but watch Caroline Kennedy - the last of the most famous of the Kennedy families, now the lone child, the lone sibling left to carry the standard for the name. But you know what? She doesn't have it either. She's probably the only one in that small but signficant Kennedy family unit that doesn't. Who can hold a candle to the style and mystique of Jack and Jackie? John Jr. had it, but sadly, he's also gone now.

In a way, I feel sorry for Caroline. Her mother was an icon that made in indelible impact on the world. To this day, her style is studied and revered. Yet Caroline doesn't seem to have any of that. Candidly, she's frumpy, something Jackie could never be. I wonder how much that has bothered her over the years, if at all.

I ran across this photo of Jackie, Rose and John Jr. during a stay at their Palm Beach home. Even on a weekend, headed for church, Jackie's style still fascinates. It is pure classic. And we won't see the likes of it again, not from Caroline nor from any remaining Kennedy. It was fleeting, yet etched in our minds forever.

No comments: